by Max Brantley
Matilda's blog, one of NLR's finest, broke news Tuesday that the legendary Fisher's restaurant on Broadway had closed. (Plate lunches and pies are particularly famous at the place known as Cuz's for the nickname former owner Roy Fisher bestowed on most diners). It is now named Rick and D's, for new owners Rick and Delana Green.
We followed up.
Raymond Heaggans, regional food specialist for the state Division of Health, told us, "We found a lot of gross unsanitary conditons in the facility." There were over 20 violations of health regulations, eight of them critical, the division said.
The owner voluntarily closed to make corrections and the Health Department will re-inspect before the restaurant reopens, Heaggans said.
The health report showed noncompliance across the board in everything from food handling to storage and preparation of food at proper temperatures. Last line of report: "Entire food prep area needs significant amount of cleaning."
WEDNESDAY UPDATE: Delana Green called. She took issue with some of the inspector's findings. Among others, she said the restaurant had been written up for violations in areas that were not used for food preparation. She wanted to emphasize that the restaurant had voluntarily closed to speed corrections and had corrected all but four shortcomings by Tuesday afternoon. She said she was hoping for a reinspection Wednesday afternoon and a reopening Thursday morning.
UPDATE II: The re-inspection has been completed and the restaurant has been cleared to reopen. It will serve breakfast starting at 6 a.m. An ice machine, a repair in a non-public restroom, a freezer door repair and addressing a fly problem were the final fixes, Delana Green said.
"We've been in business for 15 years [here and at another location] and we've never had a problem," she said. "We want our customers to know that if we wouldn't eat it, we don't serve it. We're a family restaurant business. It's not our goal to make anyone sick or do anything wrong."